Responsibility and action

Yet another blurb on ethics.

Much has been written in many pagan web sites and publications about “Wiccan ethics” and how do we act, or are supposed to act.

But for all the thousands of words spent analyzing different takes on the Wiccan Rede, “harm none” and such, very few has been written on the underlying principles from which our ethics should be derived. Of the huge corpus of repeated and often sweetened texts on this subject, very few speak from personal experience… and very few shed light on a very much fundamental truth: our ethical guides are not “just words”, but a consequence of how the Universe works and reacts to us. This is the main line of reflection I will pursue in this article. Would you like to read more?

A very short summary of events.
This article is rooted in a recent personal experience of mine, so it seems fitting to me to let you know a little of what happened… and I know my regular readers would like to know what has kept me “in silence” all this time ;-)

This calendar year started with my firm resolution to “grow out” of some of my limitations. I have always been good at my job… I am a very good technician and I do good science, having an almost “magic touch” to make experimental setups work. I am a decent writer, and I have been writing on and off for the past decade. I used to be a “top notch” computer programmer too.

My past choices left me in a delicate position, financially and within my family, so I decided to “go for it” and seek some change. I dedicated more time to my writing, and also started a serious study of Astrology. I invested my almost non existent resources in buying a new computer, paying up my tuition and started working really hard to make it all happen.

It started out of a crisis… come to think about it, it was a very good start. But as I have written elsewhere “the Universe had other plans” for my present. In early September, a great crisis erupted at work, the next day my computer was stolen and a lot of other things were left in a very chaotic mess.

It took me more than two months to begin to “get back on my feet”. It seems like a classic personal crisis, doesn’t it? It is, really… but let’s look a little deeper.

Magickal awakenings.

I started my “formal” way into the path of Wicca and into magick around eight years ago. It has been, so far, a very enriching experience. It has truly and deeply changed my life. One of the consequences of seriously treading this path is that you develop an “extended awareness”, particularly if you like divination.

And I do like divination. I use Tarot cards, Astrology and skrying.  My skill grew slowly (with a lot of work, of course) to the point it becomes second nature to perceive when an event has symbolic or transcendent meaning attached.

Use the Force, Luke… 

I keep detailed journals of my progress. And the most often updated are those regarding my “daily” Tarot readings. I have many years worth of notes. But as the years passed, I began taking less detailed notes. I payed less attention to the balance between heeding the advise of my Higher Self and being dependent on it. I strayed out and let myself absorbed by the “little things” of work and family.

The days in which my world exploded were preceded by symbolic warnings I did not see. I even did a reading on the very morning it all started to happen… and got the proper waring. I dutifully noted it down and later ignored it. I had grown complacent.  And some things, when set in motion, are very hard to stop.

The net result was that I took not extra precautions, and met head-on the onslaught of chaos. Believe me, it wasn’t pretty. It still isn’t.

Picking up the pieces.

What I got out of this is a shock course in certain neglected aspects of our magickal knowledge. When you metaphorically “take the red pill” from Morpheus, some things change irreversibly. Once you start walking this path, your awareness changes. That heightened awareness is not so pretty when it shows you, in exquisitely sharp lines, how much you have screwed up.

If we are true to ourselves and our dedication, we try to learn from our mistakes.  I had plenty of those to learn from ;-).

What was all this about.

The bottom line is that I could have prevented, or at least took some steps to be properly prepared for the storm that came. Had I listened to myself. To that part of myself that does not “fit” with the scientific, the conventional and “normal” self.

My first conclusion is that if you have a gift, if you have knowledge and skill, you are not only entitled to use it… you have to use it. The how and when is what shows our true nature, but there should be no question about it.

We are, of course, responsible in our use of our skills and capabilities. That’s where normal ethics get into play.

Second conclusion, your actions will have consequences. Acting (or failing to act) is a choice that carries the burden of responsibility. This responsibility is not rooted in words, dogma or belief. It’s a consequence of the very nature of our relationship with our own world.

That relationship is an expression of the principle of correspondence. As our awareness and our actions begin to transcend the physical, as we establish a closer link with our Higher Self, we are empowered to act over certain aspects of reality. This is the province of practical magick and theurgy.

We are expected to do so, not by others… but by the Universe itself when the need calls. Why? because we become active elements in the balance. Not passive spectators reacting to soulless forces of Nature but aware individuals who participate of the living tapestry of the Universe.

What I feel is that by not acting, I have not respected my Higher Self and my place in the Universe, and that is the same to say that I failed to respect myself. Once I did that, once the “microcosm” of my material self became strangled from the “big picture”, it’s just a matter of common sense that those structures that were dependent on my more enlightened functions to fail. It’s like having removed the support from a construction while the structure was not yet complete. The result is quite clear: the structure collapses.

In this whole issue, my problem was that I did not act. My actions were incomplete, were re-actions instead of proper actions. The price was failure.

Keep in mind that I blame no one for this. As I see it, this series of actions and reactions occurred  not because some Deity or agency felt I was failing, but because of the very nature of how I (we) act on the Universe. We have to be soft of touch, but out touch is there.


Now is the time to start acting, stop reacting and once more be in control of my own course. In practical terms, I’ll have a hard time recovering lost work and rebuilding bridges. But it’s clearly worth it.

Hey… look at the bright side… this blog will be updated more often ;)

Love and light…

1 Comment(s)

  1. Pingback by The Way of the Wysard » Blog Archive » 31 años… on November 16, 2007 5:38

    […] Desde ese momento hasta ahora, fue como juntar los pedazos… tratar de volver a armar un rompecabezas. De a poco, muy de a poco las cosas se fueron reagrupando. Ayer escribí algo sobre el aspecto esotérico de esto acá. […]

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